May is Be Car Care Aware Month
An Ounce of Prevention is Worth a Pound of Cure:
As a parent I have spent countless hours and dollars trying to ensure my kids' health and safety. Whether by installing car seats properly, serving a healthy diet, providing proper safety equipment for sports and recreation, or modelling behaviour like wearing a helmet, the goal was always the same.
Now that my kids are teens and learning to drive I feel that diligence in regards to their safety is even more important. Understanding the rules of the road, eliminating distractions, properly adjusting seats and mirrors, and having insurance with proper coverage is vital. Driver's Ed and practise are both important parts of the learning process, but equally important is the vehicle. It doesn't matter if the mirrors are adjusted to minimize blind spots if the vehicle is not safely maintained.
Ensuring your vehicle is safe for you and your family is what Be Car Care Aware is all about. Twice a year in May and October the AIA (Automotive Industries Association) and its partners run Be Car Care Aware campaigns aimed at raising awareness on the importance of regular vehicle care and maintenance, and the role it plays ensuring safe roads and the safety of your family. This information is particularly important to new drivers and those considering their first vehicle.
Regular maintenance and seasonal checkups help to ensure the vehicles my kids drive are safe, and minimize the likeliness of breakdowns than can potentially lead to an accident or my kids stranded at the side of the road. Our safety plan includes a review of the rules of the road, ensuring the emergency preparedness kit is complete, and inspection after the long cold winter. You'll find the Be Car Care Aware blog has useful maintenance tips and information.
My Key Tick List Items:
- Review vehicle owner's manual & maintenance schedule.
- Breaks: inspected & in good working order.
- Tires: inspected for wear & pressure. (including spare)
- Fluids: topped up with season appropriate fluids.
- Wiper Blades: in good condition & working order.
- Seat Belts: checked to ensure all are working properly.
- Insurance Information & Emergency Contact Numbers are complete & easily accessible.
- Emergency Preparedness Kit: is complete with season appropriate items.
- Spring is a perfect time to wash & detail your car both inside & out.
Teens and Teachable Moments:
Lastly as a parent it's my job to ensure my kids are financially literate, and helping them understand operating a vehicle is never just about the initial cost is a great way to teach them money management. Our family vehicles are investments we rely on and using them is a privilege not a right. Although it may be many years before my kids are ready to buy their own cars, it's important they understand what the ongoing cost associated with operating a vehicle are, and budget for insurance, regular maintenance and repairs. A time investment to research consumer reviews, financing and insurance options and maintenance for a vehicle can add up to big savings over the long run.
What steps will you take today to make yourself and your teens more Car Care Aware?
- Free electronic version of the Be Car Care Aware - Car Care Guide
- Car Insurance: Comparing Prices and Coverage
- Why Care about Be Car Care Aware
Yep, just me Cathy thinking out loud about Being Car Care Aware.
Note: This post was a collaborative effort with my friends at Lowest Rates to increase awareness on the important of regular car care and maintenance. All opinions are my own.